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The Two Great Commandments

Jim R

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The Two Great Commandments


How wonderful are Jesus two Great Commandments. What tremendous and succinct insight into the spiritual do they offer?

Jesus tells us in Matthew 22:37 "Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind", and in Matthew 22:39:"And the second is like it: Love your neighbor as yourself".

"And the second is like it" Jesus tells us. It is just as important to love our neighbors as it is to love God. To love our neighbor is just as important as loving God.This is the Commandment that differentiates us from the religious right and must drive us forward as people of faith.The religious right makes a feeble attempt at the First of the Great Commandments and then ignores the second. Since the two are interdependent, to ignore the second is to not fully live the First Commandment. We,as part of the great awakening and spiritual progressives, as a matter of our faith, must support health care for all, we must support Social Security because it helps the elderly, the widow, and orphan. Economic justice for all is just as important as loving God.

Jesus fed the poor and healed the sick. We don't have his miraculous powers but we do have a "government for the people, of the people, and by the people" at our disposal.

Killing our neighbors isn't any way to love them; perhaps we should stop that too!

A half of a million Iraqi children died because of disease and starvation in the decade leading up to the Iraq war because of economic sanctions. Some estimates range as high as 500,000 to 600,000 dead since we invaded. Is this "Loving your Neighbor"?

Was the domestic debacle of the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, an example of "Loving Your Neighbor"? We have a President who boasts of his "Christianity" yet his mother upon surveying the homeless refugees spread out on the floor in a hall said "These people have did very well for themselves, haven't they"? What callousness, could Royalties disdain for the peasants in our medieval past been any worse?

This administration talks of its great "support for the troops" as they cut the Veteran's Administration budget, what lies. Do they "love their neighbor"?

How can I love my neighbor and deny them what other citizens of this country have because of their race or ethnic origin or gender or sexual orientation?

I have studied world religions and many philosophies but for a code of conduct and a map of how to live one's life, the two great commandments say it all.

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